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Buttigieg nomination for transportation secretary passes committee vote

UPDATE: Full Senate expected to consider the nomination Tuesday at noon.

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UPDATE Jan. 28: The full Senate is expected to consider Buttigieg's nomination Tuesday at noon. 

The Senate Commerce Committee voted 21-3 today to confirm the nomination of former South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg to serve as Secretary of Transportation in the Biden administration.

The nomination now heads to the Senate floor for consideration.

Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Roger Wicker (R-MS) said he looked forward to working with Buttigieg.

Understanding People: It's Easier Than You Think

Education Session Highlights – ATSSA’s 51st Annual Convention & Traffic Expo

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No matter what you do, you have to interact with people at some level. Whether these people are managers, co-workers, customers, or clients, they complicate what you do.

Would you like to understand human behavior at a whole new level, so you can clearly see what’s driving their behavior and how best to address them?  

Learn that and more during Kim Giles 's education session at ATSSA's 51st Annual Convention & Traffic Expo. She's leading one of nearly 50 education sessions during the online event Feb. 8-12 and 16-18.

ATSSA urges governors to include roadway workers in Phase 1b of the COVID-19 vaccine plan

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ATSSA President & CEO Stacy Tetschner sent a letter today to the nation’s governors asking them to include roadway construction personnel and the manufacturers of roadway safety devices and construction machinery in Phase 1b of the COVID-19 vaccination plan as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  

The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) recommended the group deemed as essential critical infrastructure be included in Phase 1b. Frontline workers such as emergency responders and teachers are also included in this phase.

Roadway infrastructure industry personnel were deemed essential critical infrastructure workers last spring by the Department of Homeland Security. 

'But I don’t wanna: Closing the gap between training and behavior'

Education Session Highlights – ATSSA’s 51st Annual Convention & Traffic Expo

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Influencing your employees and team members is one of the most important and challenging parts of being a leader, but it’s essential if you’re going to create safe and productive workplaces. Unfortunately, employees don’t always listen to or follow through on your guidance. Sometimes that’s because they really don’t know what they need to do. But it might also be that they’re unclear on what action to take and when. Or maybe there are obstacles in their way. However, the real reason might be deeper than that. Maybe the person you’re trying to influence thinks they know better than you or maybe they don’t like being told what to do. 

Often the inclination is to address all problems as knowledge problems which means providing your employees more information on what to do and when. But if it’s a deeper motivation, that isn’t going to help. It might even backfire. Even the best-intentioned leaders can unknowingly make the situation worse by using communication styles that trigger more resistance.

“But I Don’t Wanna” is one of nearly 50 education sessions offered at ATSSA’s 51st Annual Convention & Traffic Expo, held online Feb. 8-12 and 16-18.

Legislation introduced to find alternative Highway Trust Fund revenues

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Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR-03) has introduced H.R.383, the Road User Charge Advancement Act of 2021, legislation that would build on the Surface Transportation Systems Funding Alternatives (STSFA) program included in the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act. The bill was originally introduced during the last Congress and included in the Moving Forward Act. If it secures passage this Congress, it would nearly double current funding to $35 million annually for STSFA.

The STSFA program incentivizes states to find alternative funding solutions for the Highway Trust Fund (HTF), as a reliance on revenues from the current gas tax becomes a less feasible method of keeping the HTF solvent. The federal gas tax has lost nearly 71% of its purchasing power since its most recent rate increase in 1993 due to inflation and the increase in fuel-efficient and alternative-fuel vehicles.  Failure to develop new sources of revenue could see the HTF experience a $190 billion shortfall in the next decade.

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